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Momo Challenge and internet safety

Have you heard of the Momo Challenge? Recent news reports from across the world have included information about this disturbing social media trend that encourages students to hurt themselves.

There is good reason to believe that the Momo Challenge is an internet hoax, but news reports and social media frenzy may still cause stress and anxiety among our young people. That’s why we are sharing this information with our families.

We are asking Petersburg parents and guardians to talk with your children about staying safe online. Your discussion could include

  • Reminding children to never contact strangers online, on any platform.
  • Encouraging children to share their worries or concerns with you.
  • Ensuring that children understand the importance of not giving personal information to anyone they do not know.
  • Telling children that no one has the right to make them do anything they do not want to do.
  • Setting privacy systems on devices with your child as a way to have the conversation about safety.

It is also important for parents and guardians to know what children can access online. We encourage parents to set privacy settings for all social media and gaming applications (including YouTube and WhatsApp) and to keep video games and YouTube watching in shared family spaces.

The Momo Challenge is the latest online threat but it will not be the last. That is why it is vital that our young people practice good digital citizenship when using technology. The Technology Department of Petersburg City Public Schools has created a site that includes important information about staying safe online.

If you have any questions or need support discussing online safety with your child, please get in touch with your child’s school. Thank you for your support.